After three days, 6 attempts and 48,000 images 360 Cities broke a world record while creating an awesome panorama of London. Based on the 29th floor of the BT Tower, a major UK communications hub, 360 Cities setup a multitude of equipment 177m above the city. The site was chosen for it's height but more importantly for it's stability against wind which directly affects the clarity and accuracy of their panorama.
Amazing details and zoom levels of the panorama are the result of their careful planning and accelerating innovation in camera tech. To put the later point in perspective, their previous record from three years ago resulted in a collective photo size of 80 gigapixels. This newest record-breaker is 320 gigapixels.
Yes, the camera technology is impressive but how could they possibly stitch together tens of thousands of images in one lifetime? An amazingly powerful computer and 200 hours of render time, of course.
The final product allows users to see a surprising amount of detail from about six miles away and a few quirky, high resolution finds should you choose to zoom in. Integration with popular social media channels turns the panorama into a (very challenging) scavenger hunt where users can share their entertaining discoveries.
Having used a variety of tiling technologies for various projects, our team appreciates the effort that such an achievement requires. We're also amazed by the availability of open source tiling technology which makes such innovations feasible.
Personally, I think the coolest thing about this panorama is the god-view of the world, created by simply panning and zooming through hundreds of images. Where can you imagine this technology being used? I immediately thought of the film Microcosmos. Think of the learning implications if we turned our lenses to the microscopic level.